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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Jupiter, Jun 20, 2019.
I agree that spending a little extra could be worth it. Skateboarding is a great hobby.
Don't forget the helmet and pads, you can find plenty of videos of pros wearing their gear, if there's any disagreement on wearing safety gear.
As for what board, well what sort of riding? Freestyle, ramps, skatepark, can all be done with the basic board, get a longer board for downhill and cruising around town.
If it's skateparks and smooth area riding get the smaller hard wheels.
If it's rough roads and sidewalk the urethane style are better.
This is what I meant about mini boards, this is almost exactly like the one my son has... not appropriate for learning.
It doesn't have a kicked up nose.. it's much more old school. If it was sized up it would be fine, but it's just too small. There's not enough room on it to get both feet on it unless one is just ball of the foot on the tail.
We actually just got a Razor scooter too and I'm kind of shocked even the adult model of those doesn't really have enough room for 2 feet. That and holy cow is that steering column cheap and flexible.
Asking someone who has never skated before what kind of skating they plan on focusing on is a little premature, IMO.
A generic board nowadays is the freestyle board. Only the size of the wheels matter, but even that not much. Standard wheels are freestyle wheels. Stock longboards may be easier and softer, but are only good for cruising. Start out with the basic freestyle setup, until a rider gets enough experience to know what she prefers. That's how the vast majority of people learn to skate on, I would guess.
I started guitar with chords. When I felt confident enough playing recognizable songs to motivate me to keep learning new things, then I branched out.
Welllll, at least the wheelbase is spread out. It can't be any worse than the tiny 'modern' boards I've seen at Target or whatever. Those are death traps. AND it has sealed bearings. We didn't have those when I started out.
I agree that this is inappropriate to learn on, now. It's novelty and nostalgia. Nothing more. It's 2019. We know better now.
Actually, I learned on one like this in the 70s, but I didn't use it for long. I had several old style type of setups as a kid (some bought, some given). It was the 70s, so skateboarding didn't really come into it's own until the late 70s and early 80s. Lots of protoyping and evolution of what worked and didn't had to occur. Not until my dad bought me a proper setup at a surf shop did I feel comfortable enough to start doing more than just pushing myself around the sidewalk.
Looking back... I recall having a wood skateboard with steel skate wheels and fixed trucks. My dad made a deck at one point, looked a bit like @SacDAve's, but much smaller. It had roller skate trucks and wheels on it. A step up. But still no sealed bearings. Someone left an old board at our house with a homemade deck that had the Keep On Truckin' guy on it. I had a blue plastic one like the one pictured. At least the one above has sealed bearings. Imagine trying to ride one like that with rusted ball bearings. Yeah, that's what we had so that's what we learned on.
It just so happens that I keep a skateboard blog, and have posted a few beginners' guides:
Thanks for the input guys, some great info and advice.
This looks to be the one she's getting:
Laminated maple deck, 31"x8", ABEC5 bearings. About 60 bucks. Not really a beginner's model, but maybe I'll look into some softer/slower wheels and she can switch back to the faster ones later.
Don't worry too hard about the wheels. Soft ones actually might be faster on rough surfaces because they'll soak up the bumps a little more; hard ones are noticeably faster only on well-maintained surfaces, such as a skatepark or something like a tennis or basketball court.
Couple of tricks and tips:
-You don't want the wheels to be rattling loose...get 'em snugged up so they spin freely, but eliminate as much side-to-side play as possible. Doing that will keep the bearings a little better in line so they can last longer. Per my blog posts, bearings aren't necessarily fast, but they can be slow if they're not maintained.
-Same thing goes for the bushings/kingpin. Keep 'em snugged up, but not overly compressed. If you need a stiffer ride, it's most certainly worth the $10-15 to buy a whole new set of harder bushings...same goes for if you need softer bushings. Keep that nylock nut on the kingpin engaged with just a little preload on the bushings; don't let it rattle, and don't let it squish the bushings.
-It's gonna roll crooked when you're just pushing it down the sidewalk. That's not going to matter when there's a rider on it because skateboards are a lean-to-steer device. With the rider's weight centered over the board, it's not going to turn or veer one direction or the other (unless something is horribly, catastrophically wrong).
-She will fall and it will hurt. Prevent permanent injuries with wrist protection (either with slide gloves or wrist guards), knee and elbow pads, and a helmet. Skateboarding is accepting the fact that you will fall and it will hurt, but going out and doing it anyway (then dusting yourself off and doing it again). It teaches a weird amount of tenacity and perseverance.
Aww man, I can see it already...
Her or me in a cast by August...
I bought my son a complete Blind board for $60ish. Good first board. Triple 8 helmet and pads.
That board looks fine, I bought a skateboard for myself a year or so ago. Skateboarding is hard. Hopefully she has friends who do it too!
Yeah, well, that's where it's starting from.
I too think it would be great if she really got into it. She does artsy stuff, and some music stuff, but right now she's not getting outside too much. Personally, I'd rather have her get into a team sport like basketball or softball, but we can't choose what our kids get interested in (we got a sax and an electric guitar at home to prove that), and I'm not anti-skateboarding by any means.
Start where I left off. King size Hensley, Gull Wing trucks, pink Slimeballs.
Instead of going cheap on something new, I would buy a quality used brand name skateboard or longboard (girls seem to gravitate to longboards...unless she's interested in doing ollies and flip tricks in a street environment or skating in skateparks) and letting her sand the graphics off and make it her own with some paint. You'll get a better overall board, won't spend a fortune and she'll be able to learn on something decent. Tons of stuff on Craig's list.
All of which is currently available reissued!
Have you asked her about the boards her boarding friends use?
I doubt a longboard is suitable and the mini is out, so grab a decent deck similar to the locals preference.
I'd say buy good trucks and kinda cheap wheels, then let her figure out what she wants for better wheels after she learns a little more.
Maybe I'm so far out that I don't know you only use one kind of wheel, but I changed wheels frequently and wore them out too.
A longboard is cool and you could eventually make one with her, I've made a dozen boards (in the '70s) including a couple of longboards.
"Freestyle" decks should be laminated in a form though, not really a home made thing.
Worst comes to worst (and she doesn't use it) you can use it as a dolly for amps...